Paul Merson’s Arsenal comments are becoming an embarrassment

Paul Merson is an Arsenal legend and someone who I admire for the bravery he’s shown in sharing with the world his battle against addiction.

He won over Sky Sports with his punditry. Originally on Soccer Saturday viewers could relate to the ex-midfielder who would talk to you how your mates would.

Watching him on Tuesday Night though he was less entertaining and more bitter about his former club.

While his peers were laughing at some of his comments, the 53-year-old was not.

That caused more nervous laughter which led to Merson being more serious.

If I’m honest, his eccentric behaviour made me concerned about his mindset.

This was a man being paid to discuss the final hours of the transfer window, yet his conduct wasn’t professional. You could hear him gossiping with other guests when they were off screen and seemed to have a sarcastic tone towards the host who increasingly didn’t know how much was this him joking and how much was it him being annoyed?

Don’t get me wrong, he’s got every right to be unimpressed with the Gunners this season. With zero points and goals so far how can anyone not be negative about what is going on?

Yet Merson isn’t the only one employed because he has links with a side.

Gary Neville will critique Man United, Jamie Carragher the same with Liverpool. Yet both do it in a manner where they are expressing their opinion while showing respect for their once employer.

There’s a lot of points made that I agree with. The problem is his need to envisage a statement so much, he goes over the top, to the point it lacks credibility.

Where once I thought this was for fun, I fear it’s actually a reflection of how he feels about himself.

Not content to say Arsenal won’t finish in the top 4 this season, he claims that 6th would be ‘pulling up trees’, that 10th ‘is about right’

He lists Spurs, West Ham, Leicester and Everton as all sides who should be expected to finish above us.

If he had stopped after predicting we won’t qualify for the Champions League, most gooners would have nodded their heads. But by going so over the top, he becomes so ridiculous that the credence of what he originally said is lost.

Of course, any of those sides could finish above us (3 did last season) but to educate younger fans that Arsenal are ‘pulling up trees’ is not accurate, and he knows it.

He understands full well how big a club we are and knows that 6th would be viewed as a disappointment.

It certainly isn’t impossible for Arsenal to finish above any of those teams and I have to question his motive in pretending that it is.

His most embarrassing quote in midweek though (his peers cringed for him) was his boast that he would do a better job as Director of Football than Edu.

As those around him laughed, unsure of how serious he was, he then randomly said ‘only If I can bring Tony Adams with me’.

So random that again I fear he wasn’t in the right frame of mind.

Apart from being his captain once, why’s he blurting out a random name whose last job in the sport was in 2017?

Gary Neville has been noble enough to say he will never push for a manager to be sacked because his experience at Valencia taught him how hard the job is. Here’s Paul Merson saying he can do a better job than Edu when his only experience in football off the pitch was one season as manager 15 years ago!!

Is he saying that for clicks? For attention?

It’s something your mate would say on the settee angry after a defeat. Paul Merson actually means it.

By the way …. he really couldn’t do a better job than Edu.

The Brazilian has worked with Corinthians and the national team. Whatever you think of his tenure in North London he can boast he played a part in our last FA Cup success.

Adams and Merson were disasters as managers. The first has been relegated, the other was sacked before being relegated. Noeither in that time showed any evidence that they could spot a gem and turn into a diamond.

So yeah, Edu isn’t great at his job but that doesn’t mean you would be any better.

In reality Arsenal would never offer Paul Merson a job. No top Football club would.

It’s a fact that they never have.

He has a history where he’s unreliable and certainly not someone you would trust to run the daily operations of one of the biggest clubs in the UK.

That his peers laughed when he said it.

Was anyone laughing when Sol Campbell said he would love to do some training with our defenders? No?


Because Sol Campbell teaching our back 3/5 makes sense. He’s got the CV and reputation where others would listen.

Paul Merson is seen as a joke within the game who Arsenal would never hire.

That might seem harsh.

Yet, if you give it out you have got to be prepared to take it back…


Be Kind in The Comments

Dan Smith

Tags Edu Merson


  1. I watched him say what he did, i laughed hard
    His personality on this this –

    He knows he would suck HARD as a director of football, i mean the whole world knows he would be bad at it, this is why he said it.

    I’m pretty sure he wasnt serious

  2. Mmm I don’t understand this article and your fear for his mental state;)

    Merson isn’t a joke. He is highly respected for the superb Arsenal footballer he was and is seen by his employers as a pundit worth consistently employing.

    Nothing he said is outlandish and to the contrary based on his perception of the state of the club like many who would agree with his statements while heartedly.

    As for doing a better job than Edu, why not? Depends on how well you think Edu has done really.

    All based on perception and opinion of which punditry is all about.

    1. ArseOverTit I partially agree with you EDU is not my kettle of fish more concerned with Holidays and Brazilian footballers he wants to look in the Championship. We have to hope these GEL

    2. AOT, and as a footballer Paul Merson would walk into this current side, addictions and all. It is also hard to disagree with his assessment of where Arsenal will finish this season.

    3. Why because he’s likeable does everyone pretend he was special? He was decent footballer, he was almost certainly worse than Arteta for instance (who shone more attacking with Everton) and did a better job holding for us than Merson could ever but most were happy to slate Arteta the player.

  3. Why does it make him a joke? Isn’t he doing what over 80% on here do every single day?
    Moan and be dámn negative about the club all of the time?
    Even though some of us fans constantly plead with them to tone down the negativity as it only kills the little spirit fans have left.
    What? Merson isn’t a fan who can be as negative as over half the fanbase?

    Oh, y’all done see someone willing to give y’all the same dose of your medicine and suddenly he’s a joke.
    Nah, ride on Merse, even though you’re a total clown.
    They’re used to negativity and bashing everything the club does, so y’all make great pairs

    1. you know what’s infinitely more pathetic than those who’re generally concerned about the state of the franchise and put truth to words, are those who constantly whine and moan about those who’re expressing their reasonable and justifiable displeasure…how do you think your constant negative banter about the negative chatter is actually helping the equation!!!

      1. Aha, comes out the chief of them all.
        The one who never has anything good to say about the club or regime.
        I’m pretty sure all of your empty ramblings on here is making Edu reconsider his decisions, your pessimistic yappings about everything going on is making Arteta shít his pants and he’s trying to fix things because of you and not because he knows this club deserves better.
        You think I give a hoot what you think of me on here?
        Move forward mate, have that conversation with your fellow gangs.
        I don’t engage in conversations with certain people on here for a reason.
        Don’t try to engage in one with me.
        Now hop along and go moan elsewhere

        1. talk about leaning into a negative narrative…I guess when someone lowers their expectations to such miniscule level, it’s hard not to meet or, as you would imply, exceed them on occasion…unfortunately your “bullhorn” approach to everything reduces the conversation to just that, which solves nothing as this is a highly nuanced situation…on the bright side, your grade school bullying verbiage from a time long since passed is, if nothing else, amusing…btw for someone who neither supposedly “gives a hoot” or doesn’t “engage…with certain people” you sure had plenty to say…too bad none of it was revelatory in nature….much like this confounding club, just the same old, same old

  4. Merson is a man with a large mouth & a small brain. He comes across as having had very little education. How anyone can take him seriously is amazing.

  5. Merson is a muppet.Tries to impress the panel with shock,laughable comments.The shame is his criticism is aimed at the club rather than the owners/ regime which is understandable when you know he is a chav ,a boyhood Chelsea fan.What class do they have.Zero.Used to be held in check by Charlie Nicholas,but since he left his mouth is running riot.

  6. I saw him on the box that night.

    Val thought he was joking and to be honest, I wasn’t entirely sure that Merson was. What I do think, is Merson is a dying breed of pundit. Blokey and without improvement in his presentational skills over many years of trying. I don’t expect him to speak with a plum in his mouth but he lacks meaningful vocabulary which then lacks professionalism. Plenty of former players – now in punditry- could hardly string a sentence together but have clearly worked hard to get better at it.

    1. That’s true SueP

      And I like that. I don’t want a vanilla world where everyone is the same and has the same thought or way of expressing themselves. I don’t want corporations to dictate how we ‘should’ conduct ourselves in every sphere of life (obviously behaviour has to be kept within reason and merson shouldn’t be able to get his old chap out and do the helicopter during a broadcast whilst sniffing Charlie from his shoe) but there should be some freedoms of expression.

      Characters are disappearing from the game because they are all being bred as PR trained droids whether pundits or footballers.

      All very corporate and lacking connection (but like Kroenkes AFC with the fans).

      For all there frailties Cantona, Best, Merson, Maradona etc etc will always be well remembered as individuals and artists (piss artist in Mersons case;).

      1. I don’t want a vanilla world either.
        I don’t mind if the grammar is wrong IF the pundit can actually deliver a sentence without rambling or stumbling to find a word all the time. Local accents – not a problem to me. He just isn’t very good and has nothing to do with him being a character, but that is my opinion.

        1. No I get that and it’s not a criticism on you when I say vanilla world. Just the general trend of things it seems where diversity in some realms is encouraged but not in others.

          Opinion, personality and freedom of speech is essential for any kind of ‘interesting’ and diverse debate or forum.

          I do remember though struggling to understand most football commentators growing up as they were predominantly scousers or scottish;) I love ❤️ both Scots and Scousers FTR.;)

  7. Paul Merson has had an issue with Arsenal ever since they finally ran out of patience and dumped him. It was always a stark contrast between him and Charlie Nicholas on SSN every Saturday afternoon. When Charlie spoke, his criticism was almost always heartfelt and constructive and there was never any question as to where his loyalty lay, but not so with Merson. It says a lot about Sky Sports objectivity that they dumped the largely objective Nicholas and retained the vitriolic loose-cannon Merson. As for the remainder of these so-called pundits. . . . ? Well, let’s be fair; none of them could make any sort of a fist at management could they? From ‘played 16 won 3, never kept a clean sheet, Neville, to spitting-boy Carragher. The only reason they’re full-time pundits is because they couldn’t hold down any of the management jobs that they take such pleasure in decrying.

    1. Mike, the best comment to date on the article.
      I always believed that to tell, describe or teach someone how to do something, one has to be proficient in that position themselves.
      As far as any successful manager or purchasing of players go, there is not one pundit that has a cv with those credentials.

      As Dan said, when Campbell says he could teach and improve defenders / defensive areas, we all KNOW he has been there and done it….. meanwhile Merson hasn’t, was a disaster in his management time and has never forgiven the club for letting him go, in my opinion.

  8. Merse is not the sharpest tool in the box says the blindingly obvious would never get a real job managing men wants to be the top geezer I’m sure sure only have him as a wind up theArsenal fans don’t give him house food he’s a very lucky man when you see the likes Kenny Samson

  9. It is good to stay positive but being truthful to yourself doesn’t implies negativity. To be candid, how many here can stake your valuables on Arsenal finishing in top6 or finishing above those teams listed. I believe Paul Merson is being truthful based on what we can all see while he is wishing the team can prove him wrong, same with many of us that didn’t deceive ourselves believing we are going to beat Chelsea and Man City, I wished I was proven wrong because of my undying love & loyalty for Arsenal.

  10. Although its always easy for a Pundit, who’s not in the job, to criticise from the sidelines, merse does has a habit of sayin it like it is..its not about negativity, its about realism. As far as us finishing in the top 6 goes, Villas recruitments been better than ours, Everton are more organised than us, with a better experienced manager Leicester better than us/much better manager and organisation at the club, and I hate to say it but Spurs recruitment has been better than ours; with a better manager…West Ham are a stronger unit than us with a galvanised team with a better manager than us…so by all that reckoning we’re good for about 9th/10th. Arsenals recruitments been awful . The sale of Martinez to Villa last season for example, plainly ridiculous. You’re supposed to upgrade a team, not downgrade. Apparentlly weve been offered Spurs reject Serge Aurier- the sad part is I wouldnt be surprised if we said yes. Merse makes comments like ‘why didnt we get Danny Ings?’ Cant argue with that either…merse does, more often than not, just talk common sense.

  11. It says it all about Merson that he was the 1st big name that Wenger got rid of . Merson has been bitter since that happened and always has a dig at the club when he can .For a player who won 5 major trophies with Arsenal and none after he left reminds us how his career went down hill after he left ,a one time legend he doesnt deserve the title anymore all we know him for now is as a performing seal on sky sports , he jumps when Stelling wants him too .

    1. PGG, to say Merson career went down after leaving Arsenal is untrue and unfair. Although offered a contract at Arsenal he signed for relegated Middlesbrough for a longer contract and supposedly more wages than Dennis Bergkamp was then on at Arsenal. He played well enough to be instrumental in Middlesbrough being promoted back to the Premier League. His form was good enough to get him selected in the England squad for the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France. When Merson moved to Aston Villa he was a key contribute to their making the 2000 FA Cup Final, which they lost 1-0 to Chelsea.

      1. In reply to Ozziegunner as I said what ever Merson won was as an Arsenal player something he didnt seem to care about when he admitted himself he tried to play when he was coked up or drunk , something he has tried to get a laugh out of in the past ,as for his success after he left Arsenal as you pointed out a runners up medal in the FA cup and promotion to the premier league is a poor return .

        1. Dan, last time I looked football was a team sport. My point is that as an individual he maintained his personal performances at a high level after leaving Arsenal.

          1. Lol. Funny how you don’t see any positives in the current team but Merson getting to an FA Cup final, top draw. In a SIGNIFICANTLY weaker league I might add. Laughable.

          2. Angus, when I have not seen any positives in the current team? In one recent post I gave support to Nicholas Pepe and have done so for many players, including giving the transfer 6/10, far more than any other posters. As for Paul Merson, Aston Villa getting to that FA Cup Final was quite an achievement. If the league was so much easier then, why didn’t Arsenal manage to win it more often? Please check your facts.

  12. Merson fills a space as a blokey, sometimes humourous tv personality. Think off him as Piers Morgan with a good right foot.

    I particularly liked his recent slagging off of the decision to sign Willian. A simple Google search shows that he is on record as praising Edu and Arteta last year when Willian was signed. To me this shows he doesn’t really take himself seriously as a pundit and neither should anyone else.

    1. Everyone back tracks sometimes- I could name a fair few on here but unlike JAers they (pundits) do it in front of the public eye.

      On paper William did look ok but as we know that doesn’t always equate to the reality of things. Merson was right talking how awful his performance were for us as anyone with optical abilities could see 👀

      1. I’ve got no problem with holding one’s hand up and saying you were wrong. That’s a sign of strength. That’s not what Merson did. With the benefit of hindsight, he questioned the competence of Edu and Arteta in their decision to sign Willian, when he was fully supportive at the time. That’s a sign of weakness in my book.

  13. What annoys me about Merson, and media pundits in general, is their failure to present constructive alternatives in terms of tactics,team selection etc based on the players available to Managers on match days.Arsenal were quite rightly slated for their opening League performance against Brentford , but I heard little from critics concerning the understrength team we were obliged to field not the fact that the tight pitch ,in itself, is a great leveller for a team highly motivated by the occasion of their first appearance in the EPL.I am not about making excuses for our disappointing performance, but their was little attempt from pundits to analyise where and why we went wrong.One notable exception to the host of mediocre pundits in my view is Danny Murphy who invariably tried to make a balanced judgement on the match, tactics etc.

  14. Of course Paul Merson does not have the qualities that Arsenal need as a manager. Although Tony Adams is an Arsenal hero he also does not have the qualities to be Arsenal manager either. Sadly neither does Mikel Arteta. In retrospect it was such a poor, poor decision to install Arteta as manager. The next 3 games will decide Arteta’s future

  15. If you think Merse’s comments were bad you should have heard me after the last 3 premiership games.🤬🤣

  16. I’m sure Merson would do a better job than Edu. I think he would be ruthless. How can you even contemplate defending Edu when he is partly responsible for where Arsenal currently stand?

  17. I heard his comments on the Sky transfer show, it depends how one reacts to his comments. It sounded a bit ‘tongue in cheek’ to me elaborating how bad a job he thought Edu was doing. He chucked in the Tony Adams bit to amplify it. We shouldn’t take him seriously, I don’t think Sky do he’s their onstage comic!!

  18. Why are u all stressing about what he said
    No matter who said it, it sounds true
    Anyone could do a better job than the current team at arsenal

    The club has NEVER been in such a poor state since the premier league started

    Let that sink in

    1. Think positive John!

      Relaxxxxx..We have 3 points!!! That’s better than having only 1 or two.

      Look on the bright side we have an experienced manager, drilling a cohesive free flowing football team with the best owner in football!

      What’s to be negative about?

        1. Oh yeh.. still at least we have a great kit. Maybe that’s it..if we start having shit kits again we might win something. Maybe we are just to self conscious now?;)

    2. It’s a cherry picked 3 game stat. Fun fact we never played the premier league champions and the cl champions in 2 out of the 3 opening games since the premier league started either. Shocker. We also have never played a team starting with B followed by M followed by C in our 1st 3 in that order either. Get back to me if it’s our worst 13 game streak since the premier league began after 13 games (which starts to gain a little statistical relevance, a little.)

      Let that sink in.

  19. “who would talk to you how your mates would.”
    If my mate spoke the nonsense he does I would shut him up. Said for years he knows nothing and his ability to think logically was long diminished by drugs and booze. An oaf, an idiot, shouldnt be anywhere near a media outlet. But then he is the sort they like, talking rubbish that gets a reaction.

  20. what some fail to realize is the reason he appears to be so negative towards our club is the fact that we’ve been an organizational dumpster fire for quite some time now, so what else is he going to speak to…when we’ve done some decent things or won a FA, he’s given logically positive comments on those regards…fact is, he’s just being realistic considering our propensity to constantly trip over our organizational dicks

  21. Look people, don’t give yourselves a whedgy over Paul Merson and his antics, he’s a character. All the leading broadcasting companies like to have at least one outlandish personality, it’s entertainment, When you have an international audience numbering in the millions, there’s always a niche for guys like Paul Merson, Stephen A. Smith, Skip Bayless and others of that ilk.

  22. Isn’ t the truth about MERSON that he is employed by Sky Sports simply to play the slightly gor blimey joker in the pack?

    I see him put there as a vain attempt by Sky Sports producer to attract “downmarket all or nothing ” types of viewers, who do not wish to discuss the many and constant shades of grey scenarios that abound in almost all football matters.
    It is easy and extremely lazy to say its ALL rubbish or its ALL gone wrong. Any fool caan spout that sort of tripe !

    Far more difficult and cerebral to deeply analyse exactly where and how to put things right.

    PS: on a pedantic point , there is no way that such as MERSON IS IN ANY WAY AN ARSENAL “LEGEND”.

    THAT IDEA IS RIDICULOUS! A clown certainly but a legend? No way !

  23. He’s no more of an embarrassment than almost every other TV pundit.
    They are nearly all becoming progressively more biassed in their views and won’t directly criticise a Manager or any of his coaching staff.
    Both Edu and Arteta have been negligent in their decision making over the last couple of years.Edu can justify his “new plan” of bringing in young talent all he likes but that “talent” is then being completely confused by Arteta’s ever changing team tactics.
    Prior to the latest “Process” the two of them allowed so called “super agents” to manipulate their team building decisions…bringing in 3 players in Willian,Mari, and Cedric..who had been discarded by their former Clubs on contracts that nobody else would have ever considered….I could go on…We all know about the litany of errors in judgement.
    Merson talks rubbish most of the time…but at least he talks from the heart and really feels for the Club’s current predicament…a situation wholly constructed by a combination of absentee owners who don’t understand either the Club or the Game and people below them who should know better but obviously do not!!

  24. So what are we saying guys, Merson is wrong? We will finish in the top 6? Okay, whose spot shall we take then, Leicester’s or Tottenham’s? Every team in the top 6 appears to be better run than Arsenal. We are riddled with mediocrity from the board to the executives to the coach down to the players. The only difference between us and a midtable team is that so far we have way more money than most of the teams in the league. It will soon run out though as we are quickly cementing our status as a midtable team. I for one believe we will finish around 8th or 10th this season.

  25. He is and always has been a Chelsea fan so nothing should ever surprise anyone in regards to how he treats the club. He also isn’t and never will be a legend, he’s a famous ex-player that is it. Parlour is more of a legend and I barely ever hear someone mention his name. That is without getting into the fact he was a personality on Soccer Saturday not a pundit. Think Neville is massively overrated (knowledge, at least what he shares publicly) and extremely cynical/clinical in exploiting what people what to hear and making that work for United (his love) and he’s miles better than Merson.

    1. Actually do like Merson as a personality but as a pundit you’d get the same insight off of literally any drunk on any given weekend at any pub in the country.

  26. Ultimately, whilst everyone is entitled to their opinion, I believe there is a certain amount of lazy (not necessarily incorrect) punditry and commentary designed to justify the existence of said pundits and commentators (think Gabby Agbonglahor, Kevin Campbell, Paul Merson for example).

    I believe this lazy punditry feeds into certain historical narratives, planting the seeds of perception amongst all those who listen blindly, which directly causes a divide in our fan base, which is plain to see to anyone who has witnessed the knife-edge tension to atmosphere at the Emirates-ready to turn on the team as soon as we concede.

    As a life-long Gooner obviously our current predicament hurts. A Lot.

    However I also recognise that we are in the midst of a major rebuild. For those shouting ‘Ateta Out’, if we do get rid of the manager, firstly there will still be players that need replacing. Secondly quite possibly any new manager will want his own players-and so getting rid of Arteta’s players will take at least another 2 years-if the new manager lasts that long.

    While we are shopping at a different level, this summer has shown we are still a draw. We are still a massive club and players still want play for the club AND believe in the manager’s vision.

    Right now, more than anything unity is what is required. Ex players, commentators, pundits, anyone connected to our club-please remember your links to the club are what’s paying your bills and so when you do voice your opinion do so with balance and respect, as right about now you should be using your clout and status to unify and energise the fan base, not driving a wedge between us-we have the rest of the country doing that!

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